Jennifer Pilch


Of first period rooftops
and first travels since

you learned from angles
natives round what wind

and divide what rain

of snow sliding off




It captured the eye’s
meaning heaven
less than ground

meaning parsnip, jonquil, codman claret, emily, picholine, meetinghouse blue
the landscape
to threaten

what keeps darkness whole
dictates growing patterns

a reverse burial,
the roof ensures
existence, permanence.



“There must be eight trees about sixteen inches square”

You were an owl erect on the side of the road

gist for joist, sur pièce

You were glacier sleep in 90 degree weather

loft feather-edged, well drawn

You were a gravestone buried so deep it resembled a baby tooth

end sides for plank frame

All you needed was a square, a saw, a hammer, a



When trees are bare (I mean populus, madder, pinus, and hackberry),
you see the roof for the house

you are in a solid climate

when the trees are full, clouds threaten

the ground would be paved.



Long faces on opposite sides of a curtain

wallpaper peeling like waiting onions

Do not think “love missed you like a city bus”
it will make you sick

You can not think
wrought from avoidance

Stares, —I could not
be fixated
or be plunged into strong



I saw these things and you knew these things

Glass clean between us,
I drank in every possibility

to make it straight, make the arrow strange

So much so the rooftops
begged composure.



Jennifer Pilch is the author of Deus Ex Machina, winner of Kelsey Street Press’s 2015 FIRSTS! contest judged by Myung Mi Kim, and recent chapbook Sequoia Graffiti (Projective Industries). Her poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Berkeley Poetry Review, Denver Quarterly, Drunken Boat, The Elephants, Fence, The Iowa Review, New American Writing, Summer Stock, and Tarpaulin Sky Press, among others. She edits/curates La Vague Journal.
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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis ( is the Editor-in-chief and founder of Posit ( and the author of ten books and chapbooks, including Zoom (winner of the Washington Prize), Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her poetry has appeared in anthologies such as Walkers in the City (Rain Taxi), They Said (Black Lawrence Press), and Resist Much, Obey Little (Dispatches/Spuyten Duyvil), as well as in journals such as Agni, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Conjunctions online, Diode, Interim, New American Writing, and VOLT.

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